Saturday, 10 August 2013

Souvenirs of Russia

You cannot go to Russia and NOT buy a souvenir or several ... and that is exactly what I did!

My souvenirs include a 'fish fur' ushanka (I already own one and it was excellent headgear during the cold and snow last winter), ...



... a Russian Navy cap (bought from a stall next to the Aurora), ...



... and some Zvezda model kits of Russian artillery from ...


... the shop in the Artillery Museum! (I could not have bought them anywhere else, could I?)

12 comments:

  1. I bought a ushanka when I was in St Petersburg as well, and wore it for many years to fight the worst of British winters. Sadly it had to stay behind when we emigrated because the real fur could have potentially fallen foul of various import regulations.

    Not that I'v ever really needed it here :)

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  2. Kaptain Kobold,

    The ushanka is a very sensible bit of headgear. I specifically bought a 'fish fur' (i.e. artificial fur) one so that I can take it abroad with me if necessary ... but it sounds like I won't need it in the Antipodes!

    All the best,

    Bob

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  3. Nice souvenirs. I had a fez that I bought in Morocco as a teen. Sadly it met some sorry end, crushed by a box or something.

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  4. Sean,

    A hat is always a great souvenir ... and I did well this time to get some that I am sure I will find useful.

    I don't own a fez - as yet - but hope to get one someday.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  5. That was something I did manage to do during my trip, buy a substantial number of hats. Apparently there's quite a trade in them; being a Quartermaster is the ultimate job in the Russian Army, since it allows you to flog hats to stands in St Petersburg and Moscow!

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  6. Colonel Scipio,

    I also have a number of other Russian hats (two black fur ushankas, four cloth pilotkas, and four cloth budenovka hats) which I have stored awaiting a suitable wargame to wear them to!

    Judging by the number of hats that I saw on sale in St Petersburg, the Russian armed forces must be walking around bareheaded!

    All the best,

    Bob

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  7. You could land a naval helicopter on that dress hat Bob!

    Regards, Chris

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  8. What would a wargame be with out a silly hat.

    Nice collection.

    Cheers,

    Pete.

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  9. Chris Kemp,

    Some of the other naval caps came with even larger tops ... and could have handled a 'Chinook' without too much trouble.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  10. Pete,

    It is amazing how wearing a hat can enhance ones enjoyment of a wargame ... and how much it helps players to get into role!

    All the best,

    Bob

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  11. I collected Soviet items during the preceeding Cold War and they were scarce and very dear indeed. Once the Berlin Wall went down, West Germany was flooded with E German and Soviet and Soviet Bloc items. It was a veritable cornucopia of military uniform items. The flea markets were flooded with items that just a few years before, were impossible to obtain. Much of it was new I the box and it was possible to buy a complete uniform in your size from hat to boots. Even such rarities as MiG pressure suits and helmets were floating around. Fancy being a colonel of artillery or a captain in the Air Force? Yours, my friend for only a few Marks.

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  12. CoastConFan,

    There was a time when it was illegal in Russia to buy or sell military items of uniform, but as you as you say, when the Wall came down, there was a positive flood of stuff coming westward. It was interesting to see how many people were wearing bits of naval uniform in the centre of St Petersburg on Navy Day ... and how many items were on sale.

    How things have changed.

    All the best,

    Bob

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